BEIRUT — The 2022 budget proposal, debated Thursday in the cabinet for the third consecutive day, will also be discussed by the government on Friday, and next week, announced acting Minister of Information Abbas Halabi.
Here's what we know:
• Today's official statement said that a meeting will be held on Friday to discuss articles that are still pending approval. The statement did not say whether a meeting will be held on Saturday to go over the budget of every ministry, as was previously announced.
• At the end of Thursday's meeting, Halabi announced that "the government will continue its open meetings tomorrow from 9 a.m., and next week.”
• Halabi also indicated that the cabinet discussed Articles 120 to 139 and that on Friday, in addition to finalizing the articles still pending approval, Finance Minister Youssef Khalil will address the cabinet concerning the rationale behind the budget’s preparation.
• When asked about the customs tax's new US dollar to lira rate, Halabi said "It is impossible to determine the exchange rate of the customs dollar. There must be certain criteria, and it is possible that the rate is that of the Sayrafa platform (LL22,500 to the dollar on Tuesday). He also added that the finance minister will prepare a study on the rate to be adopted.
• Concerning the official exchange rate, Halabi said there is no reason for keeping multiple exchange rates and when asked whether the new exchange rate will be set by the Finance Ministry and the central bank, Halabi replied “According to law, it is the finance minister who sets the exchange rate.”
• The statement also mentioned that the finance minister will appear later before the media to explain the details of the budget proposal.
• On Wednesday, the ministers had agreed on the imposition of customs fees on imported goods that have a local equivalent in Lebanon. Also approved was a modification to tariffs at the ports and airports.
• Cabinet decided to exempt from income tax any company which was forced to shut down after the explosion at the port of Beirut but that subsequently resumed its activity.
• The Council of Ministers canceled an article in the 2020 budget that allowed the collection of taxes and duties in a foreign currency. It also changed the validity periods of the Lebanese passport to five and ten years.
BEIRUT — The 2022 budget proposal, debated Thursday in the cabinet for the third consecutive day, will also be discussed by the government on Friday, and next week, announced acting Minister of Information Abbas Halabi.Here's what we know: • Today's official statement said that a meeting will be held on Friday to discuss articles that are still pending approval. The statement...